General Election to Legislative Assembly of Gujarat 2017-Allotment of Broadcast/Telecast time to National/State Political Parties -regarding.

A copy of the Order No.437/TA-LA/2017/Communication, dated 30th October, 2017 issued by the Commission regarding allotment of Broadcast/Telecast time to National/State political parties in the General Election to Legislative Assemblies of Gujarat, 2017 is enclosed for the information of the general public.



BY SPECIAL MESSENGER
ELECTION COMMISSION OF INDIA

Nirvachan Sadan, Ashoka Road, New Delhi-110001


No. 437/TA-LA/2017/Communication                                                Dated: 30th October, 2017
 
ORDER

            At the time of General Elections to the Lok Sabha in 1998, a new initiative for State funding of recognized political parties through free use of the State owned Television and Radio was introduced under directions of the Commission vide its Order, dated 16th January, 1998. The said scheme was subsequently extended in all the General Elections to the State Assemblies held after 1998 and General Elections to the Lok Sabha in 1999, 2004, 2009 and 2014.

        
With the amendments to the Representation of People Act, 1951 vide "Election and Other Related Laws (Amendment) Act, 2003" and the rules notified thereunder, equitable time sharing for campaigning by recognized political parties on electronic media now has statutory basis. In exercise of the powers conferred by clause (a) of the Explanation below section 39A of the Representation of People Act, 1951, the Central Government has notified all such broadcasting media which are owned or controlled or financed wholly or substantially by funds provided to them by the Central Government as the electronic media for the purposes of that section. Therefore, the Commission has decided to extend the said scheme of equitable time sharing on electronic media through Prasar Bharati Corporation to the ensuing General Election to the State Legislative Assembly of Gujarat -2017.
           
The facilities of use of broadcast time and telecast time will be available only to National Parties. There is no Recognized State Parties in respect of Gujarat.

THE SALIENT FEATURES OF THE SCHEME ARE AS FOLLOWS:

1.         The facilities will be available from the Regional Kendra of the All India Radio and Doordarshan and in the headquarters of Gujarat State and relayed by other stations within the Gujarat.

Time allotted for Telecast/Broadcast:

2.         A base time of 45 minutes will be given to each National Party uniformly on the Regional Kendras of Doordarshan network and All India Radio network in Gujarat.

3.         The additional time to be allotted to the parties has been decided on the basis of the poll performance of the parties in the last assembly election of Gujarat.

4.         In a single session of broadcast, no party will be allocated more than 15 minutes.

Date of Telecast/Broadcast:

5.         The period of broadcast and telecast will be between the last date of filing the nominations for the first phase of poll and two days before the date of poll (in each phase) in Gujarat.

6.         The Prasar Bharati Corporation in consultation with the Commission will decide the actual date and time for broadcast and telecast. This will be subject to the broad technical constraints governing the actual time of transmission available with the Doordarshan and All India Radio.



            Submission of Transcripts in advance:

7.         The guidelines prescribed by the Commission for telecast and broadcast will be strictly followed. The parties will be required to submit transcripts and recording in advance. The parties can get this recorded at their own cost in studios, which meet the technical standards prescribed by the Prasar Bharati Corporation or at the Doordarshan/All India Radio Kendra. They can, in the alternative, have these recorded in the studios of Doordarshan and All India Radio by advance requests. In such cases, the recordings may be done at the State Capital and at timings indicated by Doordarshan/All India Radio in advance.

            Panel Discussions and Debate:

8.         In addition to the broadcast by parties, the Prasar Bharati Corporation will organize a maximum of two panel discussions and/or debates on the Kendra/Station of Doordarshan/All India Radio. Each eligible party can nominate one representative to such a programme.

9.         The Election Commission of India will approve the names of coordinators for such panel discussions and debates in consultation with the Prasar Bharati Corporation.

            Guidelines for observance in Telecasts/Broadcasts:

10.       The telecasts/broadcasts on Doordarshan/AIR will not permit:

a)         Criticism of other countries;
b)         Attack on religions or communities;
c)         anything obscene or defamatory;
d)         incitement of violence;
e)         anything amounting to contempt of court;
f)         aspersion against the integrity of the President and Judiciary;
g)         anything affecting the unity, sovereignty and integrity of the Nation;
h)         any criticism by name of any person;

Time Vouchers for Parties: -

11.       It will be available in the denomination of 5 minutes with one voucher having time allotment from 1 to 4 minutes and the parties will be free to combine them suitably. The allotment of time to different political parties is given in a statement enclosed herewith. - PIB

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